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DH's MH, my pregnancy, our complicated situation...(45 Posts)
I'll try to be as brief as possible, although I could spend all day writing about what's gone on these past 7 months... I've posted before about my situation (which has worsened due to DH refusing to accept we need to make changes) but had name changed due to it being possibly identifying as we live in a small community.
DH has Aspergers (diagnosed as a child), anxiety and depression. He's just started counselling and CBT but has been off work for the last 4 months due to work related stress (not due to the nature of his job but being unable to cope with his colleagues and a couple of stressful situations he found himself in, and has been unable to go back since. Think breaking down at home, panic attacks, not sleeping, only getting outside briefly to walk dog, etc. He also phones me up in tears whilst I'm at work). Does very little at home as he tends to go on the computer to 'escape' and sleeps a lot during the day. Refuses to go to bed at sensible time as he has nightmares and stays up on the computer. Not on any medication, GP keeps saying his depression is circumstantial and it wouldn't help.
I'm working full time, doing the bulk of household tasks and trying to take care of the dog, am 26 weeks pregnant and struggling with round ligament pain and pain in my back/hips (which I have mentioned to midwife). I'm giving up work at the end of December to go on maternity leave.
We have a 6 month contract for our house which expires at the end of March and we have been told we definitely can't renew it (private landlord). This is 4 weeks after my due date. Due to living in a very rural isolated location we have tried and tried so hard (I have been searching, DH doesn't/isn't able to help) to find somewhere else but so far have had no luck. DH very resistant to change, thinks here's the best place to bring up children (he's not wrong, it's a beautiful place), won't entertain the idea of moving elsewhere. I've tried telling him and spelling out that we don't have a choice, but he keeps saying something will come up and the council will house us. I feel this is very presumptuous and don't want to take this risk. At 3/4 weeks old (if the baby is even on time) I won't be in a fit state to be packing up and moving house, and as of yet can't find anywhere local to move to. A place recently came up but we were turned down despite putting in the highest offer as it didn't accept pets. We have enough saved for a deposit on a house but no one will entertain giving us a mortgage as DH is on SSP (going back to work this month on phased return so will be back to normal soon) and I'll be on maternity pay soon.
The other issue is if we move, he'll have to find a new job, which will be a mammoth task in itself (he struggles with interviews due to Aspergers and anxiety and has very basic qualifications, I have to do his application forms for him and am struggling to do everything else already, etc). I could find a job in my field of work without too much trouble which would just about support us both, but no one would take me on heavily pregnant and giving up work soon anyway.
I'm just really looking for advice on what to do (well ok, I know what we need to do), really I'm just trying to convince DH what we need to do for the sake of both my sanity/health and our baby. I spend most nights lying awake worrying about our situation and feeling angry/anxious (about the situation, about the people making DH's life a misery at work, resentful about having to do the bulk of everything when I'm so tired and in pain) because DH just brushes everything off with the notion that 'everything will be fine in the end'. Sometimes I feel like he lives in the perfect world where everything gets sorted out for him, and I'm the one who bears the brunt of the situation because I'm the one who has to worry about it and sort it for us. How do I make DH see that things won't just fall into place, and he needs to help me make an action plan NOW, before this baby comes?
Didn't want to read and run! Don't really have any helpful advise but someone much wiser than me will be along in a bit but sorry your going through such a shit time at the moment 💐 Can ur DH go back to his GP? I was homeless with a 2yr old and a 6 week old premmie it was hard as we were in a hostel but we got through it. Hope u get things sorted OP and nothing stays the same forever what seems impossible now won't be impossible in 10months but you deff need more support re housing and some help round the house xxxxx
Hi, my DH has MH issues (episodes of psychosis so different from your DH)I know how hard it can be supporting someone with their MH and work issues. Also have a fair ammount of experience of housing problems too. We are planning to start a family soon too so have had long discussions with CPN from his team about this and the impact of his MH on the situation. Lets look at this one point at a time.
Firstly you are pregnant, exhausted, in pain and also caring for DH. Is your midwife aware of all the issues? My advice, based on the advise the CPN has given me, is to be very open with her about the situation. Midwives have links with social services who may be able to offer additional support to you aswell. Your Midwife may know of services in your area who could help too.
Make sure you are putting you and baby first and let DH know that you are struggling and need his help too. My DH likes to help me in little ways even when he is quite unwell, though sometimes it takes tears and feet stamping before he realises I'm struggling and need his help, when he's caught up in his own stuff. I know its hard to offload on someone who is unwell, but it needs to be a two way street. Also stop doing everything, firstly you will make yourself ill and then not be able to look after any of you, secondly if you are doing it all then wheres his motivation to change. Even something little like preparing an easy meal for you on an evening woukd make a big difference to you I'm sure.
The housing issue sounds rubbish and an extra stress you just don't need.
Speak to the housing department at the council and suss out what the situation is in your area. In ours its bad! Theres no chance of housing until you are actually homeless even with a child here. A neighbour of ours with a toddler was evicted by her landlord, the housing office told her that she must squat in the house until the baliffs came to evict her before they would consider her for housing, if she left before this eg to stay with family she would be considered to have made herself homeless voluntarily and therefore be at the bottom of the housing list. Your area may be different, but just so you know its not a reliable source of housing. Also DHs experience, you wait all day at housing office when actually on the streets to be told there is no emergency accommodation and to come back tomorrow and try again, (I've heard of people being offered emergency foster care for their children in this situations whilst parents are left on the street) The accommodation is then often b&b or hostel until something becomes available. As its not neccissarily finances that are the problem private rental would definately seem like the more secure option. But obviously thats what you are trying to find now, I'm not sure what else to suggest there. Is it worth asking arround at work if anyone knows of any rentals coming on the market too, as you might be able to get in there before they get advertised. We have an internal memo that often has this kind of thing at work.
With regards to DHs MH I'd be tempted to ask for a second opinion from another GP. Yes his depression may be circumstantial, but if its now impacting on his ability to function then surely it would be worth treating or at least trying antidepressants.
Big hugs to you
Thanks for your messages of support, having a really tough time and needed to share.
My midwife is aware but seems sort of detached from it, she doesn't comment or discuss with us, just lets me tell her about it then talks about something else.
The housing issue is complex as we signed our contract in which it states that the new people will be moving in on X date, cleaners will be in on X date, we have to be out by X date (before) and will be treated as trespassers on the property if we don't vacate it (basically the landlord would call the police) as the new people need to move in. We signed this because we were at the time staying at a friend's and had nowhere else to go, so the house we're in now was a temporary solution. Can't afford to have the police called on us, especially as where DH works he needs an enhanced DBS check and anything criminal that could affect it would likely mean he loses his job.
I'll try and get him back to the GP's and ask about medication, it's tough as he really hates going and it takes a lot of convincing, but I won't give up.
Can you speak to the council at this point? Explain your housing situation? See if there is anything they can suggest? Or maybe shelter? CAB? Try and get as much information as you can ahead of time so you know what you are dealing with.
Hope you can get something sorted.
The Council are not very helpful to be honest, they just pointed out there's a huge lack of housing here and they may have to house us elsewhere (which would then mean DH needs to get a new job etc) and there's nothing they will do until we present them with a birth certificate for the baby. CAB don't come here very often at all (about once every 2 months) so aren't due over for a while, so might try and give them a call to see what I can do.
There is an official eviction process and I'm not sure that us it. Are there organisations in your area that can check if that document is correct?
Are there family you can move in with, even if that necessitates DH changing job.
Shelter have a free housing helpline.
0808 800 4444
Give them a call first.
Well my advice would be move out on your own but hey that's probably not what you want to hear.
What you do need to hear is this.
do not move out at the end of your tenancy if you expect the council to house you
your tenancy agreement does not trump tenancy law and you will be legal occupiers of the house until your landlord obtains an eviction order. Section 21 notice does not equal eviction
My advice would be the same as poldarks. If your dp won't step up then I'm afraid the new baby stage is going to be more difficult and exhausting then you could possibly imagine. It would be less stressful to do it on your own. Sorry.
If I'm entirely honest with you I'm at the end of my tether and I found myself entertaining the idea the other night Poldark. I was really down and honestly felt like I was going to have to break away just to keep a roof over my baby's head. DH just can't see my reasoning. Just wouldn't know what to do if I had police turn up on my doorstep on moving day if I refused to go - I mean surely they can arrest for trespassing?
The only family nearby are DH's parents, who I get on very well with and are very supportive, however they are also enablers to DH not doing a great deal (even before he became depressed he was brought up to be pretty entitled, and it took a lot of work on my part to make him understand we're an equal partnership, something which DMIL doesn't agree with) and wouldn't support me moving in with them on my own (DH couldn't move in with them as they can't have the dog, and he wouldn't give up the dog for love nor money, and believe it or not the ILs support him in this and were horrified when I suggested we may have to at some point down the line. Not because I'm trying to shirk responsibility of the dog, I do believe a dog is for life, but our circumstances have changed beyond what we ever imagined and I have to put my baby first).
"I mean surely they can arrest for trespassing"
They can BUT just because the landlord has asserted you are trespassing does not mean that you are.
Speak to Shelter.
Honestly it sounds like a future with him is going to be difficult at present. Chances of you being rehoused to include the dog are quite slim especially if it came to you being evicted. You wouldn't get arrested but forced to leave and turn up as homeless to the council who would be obliged to find temporary housing for you but not the dog. Do not give any hint that pils might have space. However it could be one room in a hostel and for an indefinite period. Does he have any support worker for his MH issues or AS who could explain the options objectively and persuade him to not bury his head in the sand. How realistic do you feel a phased return is?
For context, I have a son with Asperger's. I also have Asperger's myself.
With a baby on the way, you cannot wait and take his opinions into account as having equal weight to yours.
You also cannot rely on him seeing sense and accepting a compromise, because he is going to hold out for some non-existent ideal solution, the way he thinks the world should be, rather than the way it is. He may well not be able to rank the possible choices as 'Great - fine - hmm, manageable - dire', but see everything non-ideal as terrible.
If he wasn't offering any opinion, what would you decide to do? You may need to do just that. The world does, after all, contain a lot of available properties, jobs, locations and even dogs.
When I say we live rural, we're England but not mainland and we don't have any hostels or anything like that nearby. PILs do have space but aren't allowed pets in their property, however they have told DH that we can 'move in anyway and they'll have to do something'! I feel like they're all living in this entitled bubble and I'm the only one who can see that it's totally unrealistic.
I love DH to bits and the last thing I want to do is leave but it's breaking my heart that he can't see what we need to do for our baby. He is convinced the council have a duty to house all of us (dog included) and that they won't offer us a place without the dog because 'then we can't accept it and they have to offer us somewhere'. Although I love the dog too and he's very much part of the family, the council don't exactly see it that way! I have pointed out the part about intentionally homeless (for example we've had to turn down private rentals due to having the dog), and have explained the above to him about us having to literally wait to be evicted (although where they'll find bailiffs for for round here it would take ages to actually organise it all) but he honestly doesn't believe me when I tell him it would come to that - he thinks I'm over the top, hysterical and am creating too much panic.
Could you live separately for a while, not necessarily separating iyswim? I think really at this point you need to put yourself and your baby first. If his parents are supportive he could stay with them and you find your own accommodation. It doesn't sound like there is going to be any ideal solution here. I certainly wouldn't want the stress hanging over me in late pregnancy/with a newborn.
I had been thinking if I was offered somewhere for me and the baby I would have to take it, with or without him (eg if they didn't allow dogs and I had a couple of weeks to go before baby due/moving day). I could have done this with one of the properties we had to turn down due to the dog, but couldn't bring myself to even broach the subject with him knowing the repercussions on his mental health and not to mention despite us being close, PILs would think I was the most evil person and what on earth was I thinking leaving him on his own like that.
He can't move in with PILs (well literally he could, if he did, they would end up getting action taken against them for having pets in their property). So I'd basically be leaving him with nowhere to go. I can just see that when it's too late he'll realise and have a complete meltdown and I won't be able to manage that, the baby/late pregnancy depending when it would be.
Why would the council house you? If you have money for a house deposit you have money to arrrange another rental property.
I would put myself and baby first, move out and let your DH take a stand against the Landlord if he likes, from what you've said about the contract you've signed then he won't win
Just seen your last post. You're not responsible for him, he is an adult. The baby inside you needs to be your focus
Sounds like it will take some getting used to for him to not have you running around after him but you CANT put him ahead of the baby. If your PILs can't see that they are probably as much of a problem as DH is. Let him move back with them and they can sort out their own mess together
I very much doubt the council has any regard for the dog. And why would you wait for a presumably less than ideal property for the sake of the dog rather than a better one for your child?
Emergency housing wouldn't necessarily be local. It could even be a B and B. He might not be near enough to get to work, you have no choice as to where or what otherwise you are out on your own. I'd suggest you make a list of your options and reassess. Can you afford a deposit and rent advance if you found a private let? If he can't /won't move as a unit before the baby comes I don't think you have any option to go it alone. Tbh the family sounds rather over involved and stifling, however well meaning.
I'm shocked that in the position you are in, he chose a dog over his baby. That is the black and white of it.
I think you have to consider moving out on your own. Physically and emotionally dealing with being evicted/moving at 2-4 week's postpartum would be insane when you could move now. Go back to the mainland and make a better life for you and your baby- this is only going to get worse.
We have money for a deposit from a combination of savings and inheritance (not loads of it but enough for a small place), and therefore money for a rental property, so yes we can afford somewhere but there isn't anywhere for us to rent - that is our issue. We also can't get a mortgage as I'll be on maternity pay soon and DH doesn't earn enough on his own, so bank won't even look at us.
I keep trying to get through to him about everything you're all saying, I've done so much research into all of this, I've shown him websites etc that pretty much echo what we all know - but in his bubble, it won't happen to us and it won't come to that.
Council turned round and said if we didn't have the dog we could temporarily move in with PILs and still DH and Ils think we will all just be given somewhere. The dog helps in terms of his depression, he gives DH a purpose and a reason to get up in the mornings (walks etc) and I love him too and can see where he's coming from to an extent but I'm not naive enough to believe the council care about any of this. I just desperately want to put my child first and can't see any way round this without ruining my relationship with my DH/PILs unless they can see sense.
You'll have to leave that area.
Seriously, you are going to have to be the adult here and make some decisions. Leaving him behind if necessary.
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